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A Week Of It: Smoking Nazi’s And Outing Iraqis

A Week Of It: Smoking Nazis And Outing Iraqis

By Kevin List

In This Edition:
Hide Blasts Insensitive Un-PC Politicians For Nazi References
Winston Peters And His Excellent Sources
Excellent Sources But Poor Tabling Skills
Peters And Robson Have Very Short Robust Debate
The Tamihere Star-Times


Hide Blasts Insensitive Un-PC Politicians For Nazi References

Even fat Nazi’s aren’t funny in Mr Hide’s book

Sensitive ACT Leader Rodney Hide showed this week that he could make a fine contribution to race relations in New Zealand when he blasted thoughtless politicians, like John Tamihere, who resorted to using 'Third Reich' terminology for their opponents. Writing on his well read web diary, Mr Hide slammed politicians who referred to opponents as 'fascists', 'Hitlers' and 'Nazis'. Mr Hide considered this sort of behaviour to be belittling fascism's true horror.

Mr Hide was of course referring to Mr Tamihere's recent attack on TV3 Journalist, Duncan Garner and TV3's Head of News, Mark Jennings. Following in the cyberspace footsteps of Mr Hide, Mr Tamihere had written on his own internet diary that "Getting Jennings to rush to the aid of Garner is a bit like watching Hitler defend Goebbels." This 'Allo 'Alloesque stream of invective followed a parliamentary attack by Mr Tamihere on Mr Garner for his coverage of Mr Tamihere's tax troubles - an attack that was defended in Stalingrad-like style by Mr Jennings.

However, extensive research shows that, along with the writers of Hogan's Heroes, Mr Tamihere is not the only person on the planet to utilise the offensive imagery of the Third Reich for their own ends.

National's most famous internet diarist Murray McCully referred to anti-smoking lobbyists as "health nazi groups". Without wishing to tramautise anyone of Middle-Eastern extraction, Mr McCully could best be described as a crusader: a white knight riding astride a charger ready to joust for the right of Kiwis to enjoy a quiet fag.

A research paper in the New Zealand Medical Journal has pointed out that Murray McCully had little time for public health officials.

One 1993 letter from the East Coast Bays MP to the then Associate Health Minister Maurice Williamson describes Public Health Commission officials as a "bunch of cretins" and "pointy-headed wasters".

Newspaper reports alleged that Mr McCully considered the Public Health Commission to be a plaything for social engineers. The commission was abolished by the National Government in 1995.

Sadly, as Mr McCully would say, it's been all 'PC madness' from 'the sisterhood' since 2000, with ciggies being taxed to high heaven and no more fagging up in bars.

Mr McCully's no doubt passionate belief that New Zealanders should have the freedom to give themselves lung cancer is unlikely to placate Mr Hide should they bump into each other in a parliamentary corridor. Following Mr Tamihere's outbursts, Mr Hide pointed out that "Helen Clark has lost her moral authority. Her own team can get away with anything now. Clearly."

It is hoped that Mr McCully's insensitivity to the victims of fascism will also be firmly admonished by Mr Hide.


Winston Peters And His Excellent Sources

New Zealand First leader Winston Peters, has a lot in common with Hollywood film star Paul Newman. They are both dashing, debonair chaps with movie star good looks and, most importantly, excellent sources. On Thursday April 28, Mr Peters suggested that a former Minister in Saddam Hussein's regime may be in New Zealand. Mr Peters also said the man fled Iraq during the last war and moved from Jordan to New Zealand about one month ago.

Eventually, after the man's name (Amer Mahdi Saleh Khashaly) was released by Mr Peters on Tuesday, Immigration officials were able to locate Mr Khashaly and revoke his visa. Embarassingly, even though Mr Peters had suggested that the man had only been in the country for a month, the Government produced another Iraqi official with links to the Hussein regime, who had been in New Zealand for a year.

As well as knowing of the man's existence before anyone in the Government, Mr Peters also told Parliament on Tuesday that Mr Khashaly had consulted with an Auckland law firm associated with the Zaoui case.

This morning Mr Zaoui's lawyer, Deborah Manning confirmed that Mr Khashaly did make contact with McLeod and Associates but that she had no idea that he had done so. Deborah Manning is a former employee of McLeod and Associates and is currently a consultant to the firm.

While Mr Russell Brown of Public Address considers Mr Peters has "a cracking source in Immigration", it is worth noting that this cracking source is presumably also au fait with Mr Khashaly's movements around Auckland looking for legal representation.

It was however reassuring that, after Mr Khashaly's discovery, New Zealand's intelligence services seemed able to assure the Government that Mr Khashaly was not a security risk, even though he appeared to be an undesirable visitor. Dr Cullen, standing in for the Prime Minister, pointed out to the House on Thursday that he [Mr Peters] has failed to find anybody who is a security risk.

Director of the SIS, Richard Woods, a man no doubt grateful for Mr Peters’ hawk-like vigilance of NZ’s border security

A Week of It can but wonder at the marvelousness of Mr Peters sources, not only do they know more about what's happening with Iraqi Cabinet Ministers than the Immigration Service, but they also seem to know more about what is going on at McLeod and Associates than the firm's own consultant.

Moreover given that the Government was unable to identify the visiting former Iraqi cabinet minister of the hour over the weekend, how is it that the SIS had already managed to decide he wasn't a security risk?

At this point A Week of It begins to wonder if the SIS Director General Richard Woods also has access to Mr Peter's wondrous sources.


Excellent Sources But Poor Tabling Skills

At the end of question time on Thursday, Mr Peters had promised to table evidence showing that Mr Khashaly went to visit Auckland lawyers McLeod and Associates. Despite leave being granted for Mr Peters to table his evidence, nothing was handed in to the table office by 6pm last evening, meaning that Mr Peters will have to seek leave again next week should he wish to table his evidence.

A Week of It requested the document that allegedly linked Mr Khashaly to McLeod and Associates from New Zealand First this morning and was told that it would not now be released to the media as doing so would risk making known from whence it came. On this count at least Mr Peters' judgement seems sound, sources as wondrous as these are definitely worth protecting.


Peters And Robson Have Very Short Robust Debate

Just prior to Mr Peter’s request for permission to table document - documents he has since failed to table - Mr Peter’s suggested that Algerian refugee Ahmed Zaoui had enjoyed favourable treatment in New Zealand. Progressive MP and friend of Mr Zaoui, Matt Robson was incredulous that Mr Zaoui’s two years in prison could be considered favourable treatment, and interjected with words to that effect.

The Speaker of the House then gave Mr Robson some unfavourable treatment of her own by ejecting him from the House. Mr Peters sent Mr Robson on his way with a cheery “See ya later sunshine.” Mr Robson rather less cheerily informed A Week of It that in his political experience Mr Peters is, “the person who practices the most evil politics in New Zealand.”


The Tamihere Star-Times

After consulting a large number of fortune tellers and crystal ball readers, A Week of It is able to predict with 98.6% certainty that this week in the Sunday Star-Times there will be a reference to Mr John Tamihere in the political column.

While the House of Neptune was too cloudy for an entirely accurate prediction, we consider this foresight to be accurate and hope we haven't led any readers astray.


© Scoop Media

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